It was a devastating weekend for Australia, which saw both NSW and Victoria declare a state of emergency, the death toll rise to 24 and an estimated 450,000,000 animals lost in the worst bushfire crisis in the country’s history.
With people evacuating their homes to flee from the blaze as winds travelled, celebrities, politicians and the royal family responded by donating money and sharing images to raise awareness.
Comedian Celeste Barber managed to raise $20m AUD in 48 hours after posing photos from her mother-in-law’s home in Eden, NSW, prompting Pink to donate $500,000. Nicole Kidman later matched the amount and was seen in tears in Los Angeles after reportedly being told her Sydney home was under threat, while the royal family posted links to donate and sent messages of condolence, writing that they are “shocked and saddened.”
On Saturday, Scott Morrison announced the largest military call-up in recent history, mobilising up to 3,000 military reserve forces to assist exhausted volunteer firefighters and warning the fires, which began in September, may burn for many more months.
On Sunday, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the country would be sending three helicopters to assist in fighting the blaze, after sending a further 22 firefighters across to Australia earlier in the week. “This is by no means the only thing we can do to help, and we’re at the ready and talking to our neighbours frequently,” she wrote on Instagram.
Below, all the ways you can help.
Donate to The Australian Red Cross, which has volunteers at evacuation and recovery centres.
Donate to the Salvation Army Australia, which launched a disaster appeal, providing shelter and meals to evacuees and front-line responders.
Donate to St. Vincent de Paul Society Australia, which requesting money to help evacuated families cover bills and rebuild.
To help the hurt and displaced animals, donate to WIRES.
You can also personally write to Prime Minister Scott Morrison to ask for urgent action on climate change and more support for those who need it.